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I think of ET as a european magazine with a political agenda. And I think this is a way of affecting political change in the EU.

One of the main problems of the politics on EU-level is the lack of accountability. Just look at the reporting from a minister-meeting. Every minister returns home and proclaims loudly to the pres what they salvaged from their greedy opponents and what they alas had to conceed. I have the feeling that if you compare all those statements you will find reforms that no one claims credit for and yet they passed and you will find stuff that everybody claims they loved that failed. I feel that way because no one checks them, there is no european public. And if you do not believe me, ask yourself which party groups advanced and which went back in the last EU-parliament elections? You probably do not know (except if you read it in an outdated comment of mine here at ET), but I guess that you do know which parties in your country that gained and which lost seats?

So I see ET as a way of building a european public sphere. And I think that is very important for changing Europe. If we can channel this into specific actions, all the better.

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se

by A swedish kind of death on Tue Nov 21st, 2006 at 07:29:43 AM EST
I think the relatively small size of ET is an indication of the very embryonic state of the European Public Sphere.

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Nov 21st, 2006 at 07:38:06 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Indeed. But that just makes it all the more important.

Sweden's finest (and perhaps only) collaborative, leftist e-newspaper Synapze.se
by A swedish kind of death on Tue Nov 21st, 2006 at 07:45:51 AM EST
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This does make things difficult, but also quite exciting. As public participation at the EU level is weak and non-existent it is on the one hand difficult to see where one might direct effort, but on the other hand, perhaps there are untried approaches that could be discovered or created. A bit of an open field, one might say.
I read ET in part because I want to "know something" about European politics. Not, just EU politics, and my own national politics, but politics for all of Europe. A lot is done at the national level, and at the local level, and for me a lot of value from ET comes in getting a taste of how "it" is done all across this wonderful union.
I am quite looking forward to the French elections next year. I have some French colleges, I am already harassing them for information and opinions. One thing I have learned so far, they all hate Sarko with some passion, thank god. (And one (non-French, Sarko-hating) college almost had a violent confrontation over him with a (French, Sarko-loving) neighbour.) Should be an exciting spectacle. I do love the spectator sport aspect of politics...
by someone (s0me1smail(a)gmail(d)com) on Tue Nov 21st, 2006 at 08:21:53 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I do love the spectator sport aspect of politics...

That (being spectators of politics) is one criticism that has been leveled at ET...

Those whom the Gods wish to destroy They first make mad. -- Euripides

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Tue Nov 21st, 2006 at 09:41:47 AM EST
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And yet I love it. And in it I find some understanding for sports fans. Watching the numbers come in after an election is for me quite thrilling. Participation and spectation are not mutually exclusive, though the latter is easier to come by than the former.
by someone (s0me1smail(a)gmail(d)com) on Tue Nov 21st, 2006 at 09:52:25 AM EST
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Yeah.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Tue Nov 21st, 2006 at 09:52:58 AM EST
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Great link, thanks.

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.
by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Tue Nov 21st, 2006 at 09:55:30 AM EST
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Oh my!  What a read!  I remember reading that first time round, but like many diaries it was just as enjoyable the second time, and enlightening in different ways.  Barbara!  Read it and weep!

Well, all I can say is, of all the muppets, here's who I'm closest to.

Unlike most of the central Muppets characters, Gonzo is not meant to represent a human being or an anthropomorphized animal, but sports a bizarre, non-human appearance, which includes blue fur, bug-eyes, and a long, literally hook-like nose, thought to be inspired by the acorn weevil. On The Muppet Show he performed as a performance artist, stuntman and daredevil under the name "The Great Gonzo" (or "Gonzo the Great"). He takes pride in his iconoclasm, all the while romantically pursuing Camilla the chicken. In his original performance, he often complained about the people who did not appreciate his "art".

Famous quotes by The Great Gonzo.

"I shall now eat a rubber tire to the music of The Flight of the Bumblebee...music, maestro!"

"I shall now defuse this highly explosive bomb while simultaneously, and at the same time, reciting from the works of Percy Bysshe Shelley."

and finally (and apparently this is his motto):

"Anything worth doing is worth doing without a parachute!"

But hold on!  Music.  Incomprehensible mutterings and grumblings....  Strange suddenly crazed eyes.  Makesa no sense.  Of course!  I'm no suave gonzo...I'm too dim...too ughy pug ooh groo grunt...No, say it ain't so boss...But then, on t'other hand, the passion, the, well, the animal intensity.  Yes!  

(Or maybe I'm Beaker, no, ah yes, heh heh, I think he would be Sam the Eagle, and he's definitely Sgt. Floyd Pepper, heh heh, and she's Lips, and she's certainly Miss Piggy....Hiiiii YA!
 <etc.... mumble mutter mumble mutter...> ;)

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Tue Nov 21st, 2006 at 10:44:17 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I like Gonzo. The only thing is... does he have connections?

"If you cannot say what you have to say in twenty minutes, you should go away and write a book about it." Lord Brabazon
by Barbara on Tue Nov 21st, 2006 at 11:54:10 AM EST
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Is this any good?

And if you'd like some dancing tips...

And, hey!  How about King Prawn.  Does he count?

(they say he knows a spanish maths/physics guy...but I can't comment any further.)

Don't fight forces, use them R. Buckminster Fuller.

by rg (leopold dot lepster at google mail dot com) on Tue Nov 21st, 2006 at 12:18:44 PM EST
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You are a funny chap, RG. :)

Johnny Depp is definitely a good connection... :)! (He can teach us to talk like a pirate -- for details, ask Migeru.)

"If you cannot say what you have to say in twenty minutes, you should go away and write a book about it." Lord Brabazon

by Barbara on Wed Nov 22nd, 2006 at 08:15:00 AM EST
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